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Designers Propose ‘Strawscraper’

Friday, June 14, 2013

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Energy efficiency just got hairy.

The Swedish firm Belatchew Arkitekter has recently proposed a design that could turn one of the tallest buildings in Stockholm into a hairy giant.

Strawscraper rendering
Belatchew Arkitekter

Swedish designers wish to turn buildings into wind-powered beasts.

But wait; don’t get out the shears! “Strawscraper,” as it’s called, is a visionary upgrade plan for Söder Torn that features a new kind of wind power, the firm says.

Urban Wind Farm

The façade’s “hairs” are actually “straws” made-up of a composite material with piezoelectric properties that can convert small movements into electricity, according to the firm’s project description.

Piezoelectricity is created when certain crystals’ deformation is transformed into electricity, the designers say, noting that the technology has advantages when compared to traditional wind turbines since it is quiet and does not disturb wildlife.

Moreover, Strawscraper would function on low-wind velocity because only a light breeze is sufficient for the straws to start swaying and generate energy, according to the team.

Belatchew Arkitekter

The building's façade could further be enhanced to produce a colorful nighttime lighting effect and become a tourist attraction, the firm says.

“With the help of this technique surfaces on both old and new buildings can be transformed into energy producing entities,” the firm says.

Other Features

An added bonus: The beast of a building will look like it's breathing, they add.

“What is usually considered to be the most static of all things, the building, suddenly comes alive and the construction gives the impression of a body that is breathing,” the firm says.

The façade of straws could further be enhanced to produce a colorful nighttime lighting effect and become a tourist attraction, the firm suggests.


Tagged categories: Aesthetics; Architecture; Color; Color + Design; Design; Energy efficiency; Wind Towers

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